Bruce Wallace AWMM
Also known as
B. W. Donnelly AWMM
Vietnam 81959 AWMM
Medals and Awards
Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) AWMM
Flying Officer Donnelly, RNZAF, has completed an operational tour of duty in the
Republic of Vietnam on attachment to the 25th United States Infantry Division.
On 7th December 1969 while serving as a Forward Air Control pilot with 2
Brigade, Flying Officer Donnelly distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous
actions above and beyond the normal call of duty.
While on an aerial surveillance mission in the Hobo Woods, a light observation
helicopter he was working with made contact with several North Vietnamese
soldiers. Flying Officer Donnelly immediately reacted by rolling in on the target
and engaging it with machine-gun and rocket fire, which enabled the helicopter to
break contact. While the light observation helicopter performed a battle damage
assessment and called for artillery, he summoned an air strike. Upon arrival of
the fighters, he selectively marked the confirmed enemy locations constantly
exposing himself to enemy fire.
Primarily through his exceptional control of the fighters and accuracy in marking
and firing on the positions, he was able to neutralise the enemy location.
As the airmobile insertion forces which were called earlier, approached the
landing zone, they began receiving small arms and automatic weapons fire some
500 metres away from the primary target. Again without regard to his safety, he
piloted his aircraft directly towards the position suppressing the enemy and
allowing the aircraft and ground force to complete the insertion without sustaining
damage or casualties.
Flying Officer Donnelly’s determination contributed immeasurably to the success
of the mission, he is directly credited with killing one North Vietnamese during the
action, and his superb flying skill and rapid assessment of the tactical situation
aided significantly in attaining a final North Vietnamese body count of thirteen.
Flying Officer Donnelly’s coolness in the face of extreme danger, his willingness
to sacrifice all for his mission and his comrades, were in keeping with the highest
traditions of the military service and refle AWMM
POW liberation details
POW serial number
Forward Air Controller (FAC) attached to US 19th Tactical Air Support Squadron at Bien Hoa, November-December 1969. Source: Memories of New Zealand and the Vietnam War, Ministry for Culture and Heritage. AWMM
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Bruce Wallace Donnelly
- Subritsky, M. (Ed). (1995). The Vietnam scrapbook: The second ANZAC adventure. Papakura, N.Z.: Three Feathers Publishing Co. AWMM
- Hall, C. (2014). No front line : inside stories of New Zealand's Vietnam War. Auckland, New Zealand : Penguin Books. AWMM
- This record was created from data kindly provided by the New Zealand Ministry for Culture and Heritage. AWMM
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